Sunday 14 January 2018

You aren't worth more than me

Something that I can't - just really can’t - get my head around is the gender pay gap. So as a woman, you’re actually telling me that I’m going to do the EXACT same job as man, with the exact same results, hit the same KPI’s, generate the same amount of profit etc etc… but I’m going to be paid less because of what’s between my legs? Discrimination at its finest.

As someone who has always placed such a strong value on education, I especially find this remarkably insulting. I worked so, so hard for my 2:1 degree from Manchester and I’m proud of what I’ve achieved, so don’t you dare tell me that I’m less intelligent or less able than a male co-worker in the same job role, or that ultimately I’m “worth” less.

Recent news headlines have just got me thinking a lot more about this lately, and the more that the idea of unequal pay floats around my brain the more I’m utterly enraged by it. I mean if this is still going on in a country as privileged as ours, a country who should be setting an example, what kind of hope is there for the rest of the world? Without a doubt, I am so, so lucky to not have to face the hardships that women in other areas of the globe have to endure, and I am forever grateful (if not a little guilty at times) that I had the sheer luck to be born into a country where women are treated with respect.  It’s something I’ll never ever take that for granted. However, that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t be striving for complete equality here!

shirt - h&m / trousers - asos 
What I really find so shocking is just how prolific this issue is even in 2018, and if you think for a second that it's only small companies that are trying to get away with it, oh how wrong you would be. I'm sure you've probably seen on the news recently that Carrie Grace, BBC's China editor, has resigned over the gender pay gap, accusing the BBC of a “secretive and illegal” pay culture.

Over in the US, it came to light that Mark Wahlberg was being paid $1.5m to reshoot scenes in an upcoming film, while female co-star, Michelle Williams, received just $80 a day for her work. That equates to less than 1% for the same work - I mean if this doesn't absolutely shock and horrify you then I really don'kt know what will.

 The thing is, I'm not materialist at all and I'm not really one of those people who is driven by money. The issue isn't about the money itself in terms of financial reward, it all boils down to this message that women are worth less. What kind of message it is giving to women, especially younger girls, that a man and a woman can carry out the same job role but for no reason other than gender the female is paid 1% of what the male earns. It's completely degrading, demoralising and totally unfair. Not only that, but what kind of message is it giving to men? 

We should be encouraging our friends, mothers, sisters and daughters that whatever they choose to embark on in life they will be fairly recognised for the hard work that they set their minds to. Imagine working super hard all through your school life, college, even university, with the knowledge that no matter how well you do and what you achieve you will always be paid less than a male counterpart. We aren't encouraging people to be the best, most inspired versions of themselves while this prejudice and inequality exists and continues to live and breed in the workplace. 

Obviously, I don't have an "answer" to this, and it isn't going to go away over night, but on the other hand I think it is really encouraging that people and the media are picking up on the gender pay gap and speaking up about this discrimination. I think it's so important to use our own voices to try and stamp out these matters as well, so any thoughts or opinions that you have on this please feel welcome to comment below or send me a message on my social channels! xx

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